Finnish-Norwegian Anora subsidiary Altia Estonia’s has a popular Saaremaa spirit series. Saaremaa vodka is the best known, but there are also a series of different gins, which include five different flavored versions. The base spirit comes from Altia’s own Koskenkorva factory from Finland. Saaremaa Dry Gin is very simple, there are only four different types of herbs; juniper berry, coriander, lemon peel and angelica root. Simple and easy menu leads to the very affordable prices and due to low price and good availability, Saaremaa Gin is one of the most sold gin in Estonia. Saaremaa Cur Gin was released in 2020. It’s based on the regular dry gin, there is just added ginger distillate and cucumber flavor on it. Altia does not tell whether the additives are purchased or self-made. Cur Gin (50 cl) costs around € 10 in stores, a couple of euros less when bought on offer.
The aroma is not much different from the traditional Saaremaa Dry Gin. Juniper berry leads and there is a little coriander and other spiciness in the background. The taste is quite sweet at the beginning, quite crisp but also fresh. Juniper berry and coriander dominate the taste, the sweetness may come from cucumber or ginger (or just sugar). There is not any tingling ginger aroma or burn, what you can find for example on chicken soup where a bunch of fresh ginger has been added. I found some notes of cucumber or some other vegetal aroma. When sipping neat, Cur Gin is simple and straightforward, easy to sip due to its light and sweet taste. Mixed with soda water, the taste of the sweet cucumber comes out a little more, with a bit of a bitter juniper berry in the background. Still can’t find any traces of ginger.
Cur Gin is another addition of the collection of “cucumber gins,” started by Hendricks a couple decades ago. Anyway, due to the low price and decent taste & quality, it works just fine as a “poor man” Hendriks, at least in the inland market. Maybe also other countries, as there is always a demand for low price alcohols which are simple and easy-going .Saaremaa Cur Gin is very easy to approach and is a good option for those who think traditional London Dry and Distilled Gins are too dry and bitter.